Pumpkins set out around Halloween in 2017 attracted some critters at Fort Huachuca. 

As much as you might love the explosion of pumpkin-flavored junk foods in grocery stores this time of the year, javelinas also love pumpkins.

Because pumpkins, and other foodie decorations, attract javelinas and other critters, the Arizona Game & Fish Department is urging homeowners to use wildlife-safe Halloween decorations this year. 

They also suggest displaying pumpkins out of an animal's reach or indoors near a window where passersby can still see them. Ceramic or plastic decorations can also be an alternative option, Game & Fish spokesman Mark Hart said a few years ago

"Javelina, coyotes, deer and even bears eat some of the vegetables that are part of traditional holiday displays," Raul Vega, regional supervisor of Tucson's Game & Fish, said in a news release. "When displayed outdoors, they may attract wildlife to homes, potentially creating conflicts with people."

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"Habituating wildlife to a human food source inevitably leads to conflicts with people and can result in serious harm in some cases," Locana de Souza, Game & Fish's urban wildlife specialist, said in the release. "Furthermore, unintentional or intentional feeding can cause problems for wildlife, such as obesity and malnutrition, and promote the spread of disease."

And of course, anyone with concerns can call Game & Fish at 623-236-7201

Meanwhile, here are 52 photos that prove javelinas are the cuties of the desert:

Contact reporter Gloria Knott at gknott@tucson.com or 573-4235. On Twitter: @gloriaeknott

Metro Producer

Gloria is a Tucson native and attended the University of Arizona. She started at the Star as an apprentice in 2017. Following her apprenticeship, she began freelancing until becoming a full-time reporter and producer after her college graduation in 2018.